(Pittsburgh) May 19, 2016Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner lauded today’s recommendation
by the Port Authority of Allegheny County (PAT) administration to bolster service to neighborhoods
in Wilkinsburg, Penn Hills, and Pittsburgh.
“I am extremely pleased that PAT’s leadership has agreed to the repeated requests of residents
of these neighborhoods and their advocates for more service. For many in these communities
and others, public transit access is not a luxury, but is essential to getting to jobs that do not
fall within regular business hours. A ‘most livable’ city cannot leave whole neighborhoods
cut off from opportunity, and this decision takes encouraging steps toward meeting
the needs of some of these areas,” Wagner said.
Last week, Wagner issued a financial report showing that the
County’s Alcoholic Beverage and Vehicle Rental taxes have produced a
$16 million surplus in a fund that by law must be used for public transit. She urged
that these funds be put to immediate use for service improvements.
“New state funding and the increased local economic activity that has produced
the transit fund surplus give us the opportunity and the obligation to connect all of our
communities to areas that are prospering. More neighborhoods remain where this need
must be addressed, and we also must continue steps to modernize the system so that it attracts
new ridership. PAT has taken encouraging steps with the upcoming fare changes and
now with this announcement, but further advances must continue to be made,” Wagner said.
Lou Takacs, Communications Director